Apple iPad Airs Have Landed in Our Hands and Taken Off Again in Our Hearts

Our two iPad Airs arrived via FedEx Air this morning — straight up at 10:00am — and I haven’t been able to put down either of them ever since they landed in my hands.

Yes, the iPads Airs are incredibly thin and light.  I thought a mistake had been made and we were instead sent the new retina iPad Minis — I can’t imagine I’d want an iPad that was any smaller than the Air.  It’s just the perfect size, filled with magic and mysticism from the first touch out of the box.

Replacing our old iPad 3s with our new iPad Airs in my Verizon Wireless online account was dead simple.  Enter the new IMEIs.  Enter the SIM card numbers.  Boom!  Done.  Running.  We have 4G LTE liftoff!  I want all my iPads to be on Verizon LTE. Hurricane Sandy taught me that hard lesson against WiFi-only devices. Stay safe. Stay ultra-connected via many tethers back to the real world.

The first thing I did after updating my iPad via my iCloud backup account — talk about ease and transparency, thy name is iCloud — was to set up my iPad as a hotspot and run my MacBook Air through the connection for internet service.

Here’s the Xfinity report card:  13.8 MB down and 0.30 up.  Down is excellent and up is awful — is that news? — but it’s all workable and doable together for the way 99% of us will use these sorts of short-life hotspots.

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Three Days of a Hundred Years of Darkness: Hurricane Sandy and 12 Months of Nothingness

One year ago today, 8.5 million people in the New York City area were without heat or power as Hurricane Sandy blasted the soft middle of our lives — thrusting us backward a hundred years behind a wall of water into at least three days of cold and darkness:

Monday night, at 11:00 pm sharp in Jersey City, New Jersey, the lights went out and stayed off until last night at 7:43pm.  That’s three days without power or heat.  Hurricane Sandy was a massively nasty beast, and we’re just now starting the recovery process.  We are hungry and scavenging for food.  Supermarkets are closed.  Few places have power.

For many of those directly touched by the floodwater a year ago, life has yet to return to normal, and many will never recover the good lives they once had before the storm; and that is a clear failure of the government safety net and the lack of any sort of real social fabric that meshes us together.  The King has no clothes, and we don’t, either!

When it is better, and more profitable, to cut and run and abandon than it is to stay and rebuild and recover — we all have a problem.

Continue reading → Three Days of a Hundred Years of Darkness: Hurricane Sandy and 12 Months of Nothingness

The Slow, but Triumphant, Return of Sandy Hook, New Jersey

Just in time for the warm weather, I’ve learned some great news from home: Some portions of my beloved Sandy Hook, New Jersey beach and its recreation area will be available to the public again! The tireless rebuilding after Hurricane Sandy has paid off enough to merit a reopening ceremony on May 1st, and although I won’t be present for it, I couldn’t be happier.

Continue reading → The Slow, but Triumphant, Return of Sandy Hook, New Jersey

Fort Hancock Six Months After Sandy

Today, as I casually pondered what I would do with my day off, I had a jolting moment that I’m sure many people in the tri-state area have experienced. I thought to myself that maybe I would head over to my beach, particularly its recreation areas– and then was struck with the memory that I couldn’t.

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12-12-12 The Concert for Sandy Relief Album Review

After the release being delayed a day, you can now finally purchase the “12-12-12 Concert for Sandy Relief” album  on iTunes.  I watched the concert on live television and it’s interesting to see which artists and what songs made the 24 cuts on this memorial hurricane record.

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Schwab Investment Checking vs. Fidelity Cash Management

In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, I realized access to our money was pretty important.  Our local bank branch was down, and without power, for over 10 days.  Sure, there were other branches to visit and online banking to exploit — but when it came down to it — as Mark Twain sort of said, “If you’re going to put all your eggs in one basket, you better have a pretty good basket!” — I knew I had to build a better basket.

https://i2.wp.com/boles.com/called/12/schwab-fidelity3.jpg?resize=498%2C293

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A Tree Dies in Rockefeller Center

I heard discouraging news on the radio this morning that the “Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree” had been felled and was on its way to Manhattan from Mount Olive, New Jersey.  I never understood why we needed to cut down a real tree just to watch it die adorned with 45,000 lights in the Rockefeller Center public square.  The additional bad news that, this season, the tree had actually “survived” the wrath of mother nature and Hurricane Sandy — only to be cut down days later by men with chainsaws — made me realize the whole thing is a false idol tradition that needs to end in the faux name of “celebrating” the birth of Baby Jesus with a dead tree.

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